Tag Archives: Caol Ila

Caol Ila 2005 11 Year Old (Gordon & Macphail Cask Strength) Review

When a whisky is matured in 1st Fill Sherry Butts, you’d think it will sport dark color and big sherry notes in the whisky, but that’s not always the case because there are different kinds of sherry and different kind of casks.

Take for example this Caol Ila 2005 11 Year old from Gordon & Macphail. A vatting of 4 casks (Casks 301521, 301523, 301524 & 301527) that were all distilled on February 2005, lay asleep for a long time and then married together and bottled Last July. You wouldn’t think it’s a whisky matured in first fill sherry casks.

Caol Ila 2005 11 Year Old (Gordon & Macphail Cask Strength) (57.3%, £47.40/€69.95)

Nose: Classic Caol Ila peat smoke, red apples, lemon, smoke and saltiness, malt cereals, cream, cured meat and after a while some fruity fragrance. It’s a mellow nose and not a very complex one but it has structure and backbone. With a few drops of water it’s fruitier with more honey, a touch of pineapple, extra vanilla and pears, richer and stronger. Continue reading

Caol Ila 2007 8 Year Old Signatory Vintage for Whisky Exchange

Going back to Scotland after a short detour to SA, let’s check another one from the latest batch of The Whisky Exchange exclusives, a peated young Caol Ila.

It’s a 2007 vintage that was bottled in May 2016 making it a 8 Year Old whisky. 320 bottles were bottled from this 200L barrel thanks to a non cask strength ABV of 46%.

Caol Ila 2007 8 Year Old Signatory Vintage for TWE (46%, £55.95, Cask #315325)

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Caol Ila 17 Unpeated Style (Special Releases 2015) Review

It’s no news that Diageo release 2 affordable whiskies each year with their Special Releases annual series, The Lagavulin 12 and an unpeated release from Caol Ila.

The Lagavulin 12 2015 was already reviewed here (very favorable), so let’s check the other candidate this year: a 17 yo unpeated Caol Ila.

Interesting to see that it boast a jump of two years over last year’s release so it’s not coming from the same stock.

Caol Ila 17 Unpeated Style (Special Releases 2015) (55.9%, £89.95/€107/$144.99)

caol ila 17 unpeatedNose: Dusty, oh so dusty, much more dusty than the 15 yo, that I had to re-check the bottle for whisky turbidity. Vanilla and honey, traces of peat smoke (even here you can’t really escape it ah?), pears, peaches and golden apples. After a few more minutes in the glass, it gets less dusty (although it’s still there in big way), sweeter and fruitier. Continue reading

Whisky Review – Caol Ila 2002 (Feis Ile 2014 bottling)

Today is Caol Ila open day, so let’s review their Feis Ile 2014 bottling. It was the first Special/Feis Ile bottling done by the new distillery manager David Wood who try to carry on and stand up to Billy Stitchell’s work.

So the Feis Ile 2014 bottling? Not much to tell about it. It was matured in refill American oak hogsheads without any fancy finishes or tricks.

Caol Ila 2002 (Feis Ile 2014 bottling) (55.5%, 1500 bottles, £150)

caol ila 2002 feis ile 2014Nose: Sweetness and peat with sweetness at first dominating the nose. Lemon and coconuts, a bit oily. With time there are ashes on the nose. With water it’s spicier and bring out a huge coconut concentration. Continue reading

Whisky Review & Tasting Notes: Caol Ila Unpeated 15 year old (Special Releases 2014)

From one Special Releases whisky to another Special Release whisky. In the last few iterations of Diageo Special Releases lineups, we learned to expect two affordable whiskies in the lineup: The Lagavulin 12yo cask strength and the the one we review today – the Caol Ila Unpeated.

The 2014 edition is 15 year old version, matured in first-fill ex-bourbon casks, where all previous editions were up to 14 years).

Caol Ila Unpeated 15yo (Special Releases 2014) (60.39%, 10,668 bottles ,£72/€89.95)

caol ila unpeated 15 1998 special releases 2014Nose: Starts with a wave of sweet fruits and it’s very dusty (partially due to the high ABV) and heavy, creamy cereal, lemon and despite it being unpeated, I occasionally do smell some sweet peat. With a few drops of water the ABV drops down and the dusty notes turns to mineral notes with salty touch, it becomes more sweet and fruity with tropical fruits like mango and passion-fruits. Continue reading

Caol Ila 25 Year old review and notes

A new year has started and I hope you don’t have a hangover from last night festivities (at least not a bad one 🙂 ) so let’s welcome in the new year with a mini series of lovely high-end whiskies (you can call them posh if you want to), some are way expensive and some are still affordable – just like the one we review today: Caol Ila 25 Year Old.

It’s the revision that Caol Ila started bottling in 2010 at 43% while previous versions in 2004/5 were bottled at cask strength (if you got any of those, drop me an email!).

Caol Ila 25 (43%, £158/€187.5)

caol ila 25Nose: Hmm, I tend to forget how age diminish the peat impact and so the initial big fruity note caught me a bit off guard but then a gentle peat smoke joins in the background with pine, apples and sweet green melon. there may be even a bit of perfume here. with a few drops of water we also get honey. Continue reading

Whisky Review – Douglas Laing Provenance Young and Feisty Caol Ila 2009

Feis ile is entering its 3rd day and the focus shifts from the west side (Bruichladdich) to the east side as today is the open day for Caol Ila distillery. Unfortunately I didn’t have any new Caol Ila whisky to taste and post tasting notes for you, my loyal readers, but then again, #whiskyfabric is here to rescue me. I’ve asked my friend Tom (of Toms Whisky Reviews), a top bloke and a #whiskyfabric cog, to write here a guest post on Caol Ila for this day and he agreed, so thanks Tom and happy reading!

The whisky community, especially those who partake in the online #whiskyfabric, really do take an active part in each others lives and at times each others blogs, so when Yoav asked if i would write a guest review for his blog I was over the moon.
Yesterday, 25th May, I was at Whisky Stramash and along with catching up with some of the Twitterati and #Whiskyfabric superstars like Johanne McInnes (@whiskylassie) and Rob Bruce (@robster38) I used it as the opportunity to select a dram for which i would write a review.
That dram was the Caol Ila Young and Feisty from the Douglas Laing Provenance range, one of my favourite ranges and one of my favourite whisky companies.
this dram is 5 years old being distilled in 2009 but it has so much more to it, such lovely character, the sweet and sour mix that works really well with smoke.
This may be young, but it’s very upfront about that, and i love it, young peaty whiskies are the way to go and i could easily sit and sip this all night (preferably with an open fire and a big buffalo steak).
thanks to Yoav for the opportunity to present my review here and to Douglas Laing for producing such lovely whisky.

Douglas Laing Provenance Young and Feisty Caol Ila 2009 (46%)

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